F1 needs rethink after hybrid rules "mistake", says Horner

Formula 1 is in need of a major rethink to regain its popularity after the "mistake" of the current turbo hybrid engine regulations, claims Red Bull boss Christian Horner.

With F1's engine manufacturers having met in Abu Dhabi on Saturday to begin discussions about new rules for 2017 and beyond, there is a growing suggestion that the sport may need an overhaul.

Horner, whose outfit has risked being driven out of the sport because it struggled to get an engine deal in place, thinks the best F1 could do is work out exactly what it wants to become.

And he believes the situation has been exacerbated by teams protecting their competitive interests too much, at the expense of doing what is best for the sport.

“I suppose when you look at it, the teams have collectively been spectacularly incapable of coming up with solutions and sensible remedies to the problems,” explained Horner. “And I think the problem we face in Formula 1 is you’ve got vested interest.

“Within your own team you try to protect the elements that are your strengths, that offer you that competitiveness over your opponents.

"And I think this is where Formula 1 has tripped over itself over previous years and indeed, the engine formula that we’ve ended up with today arguably is a mistake.

“It’s expensive. The technology is fantastic but we’re not doing a great job of communicating that and I think it’s put a situation where probably half the grid is currently insolvent.

“I think there’s a fundamental question that needs to be answered and that is: what should Formula 1 be?”

Technology imbalance

Horner thinks that F1 has to do much better in working out how best to balance its entertainment values, while also making sure it maintains its technological position.

“I certainly believe that Formula 1 should be entertainment,” he said. “It should have a technological interest to it, but that needs the promoters and the owners of the sport, together with the regulators to decide what that product is, and come up with a set of rules, not let engineers write those rules.

“They [should] come up with those rules and put them in front of the teams and say 'that’s what Formula 1 is going to be and that’s what it should be for the future,' and they need to bring in some people with the right skillset to be able to define what those regulations are.

“And there’s good people that aren’t currently in employment within teams at the moment that are impartial, that come up with a set of regulations that are in the best interests of Formula 1, that’s going to provide the best show for the fans, for the public, for the paying spectators who are the backbone of what we do.

“Because without them there is no show, there is no Formula 1 and we need to get Formula 1 back to being a sport that is enthralling to the public.”

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Teams Red Bull Racing
Article type Breaking news
Tags christian horner